EWA BEACH, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - "We've had a great response from the community of West Oahu," says Susan Murray, Chief Operating Officer of the Queen's West Oahu hospital, "We've seen wonderful patients coming through the door, even more than we anticipated."
So many more than anticipated that the new hospital has already had to shuffle staff in the first week.
15 people, that's doctors, nurses and techs, have been brought over from the downtown hospital to assist.
The Queen's Medical Center West Oahu opened on May 20. In the first seven days, there were 940 visits to the emergency room. And the average wait time in the E.R. is an hour, double the wait time at the main hospital.
"Overwhelmed, overwhelmed, overwhelmed," says Kurt Fevella, "I don't think they were ready to open." Fevella of the Ewa Beach Neighborhood Board was having respiratory problems on May 20, and went to the E.R. He says a woman in the waiting room told him she had already been there for six hours.
Fevella says he then heard the doctor tell the woman that she should have called her regular doctor before heading to the hospital.
"The way they were treated, that's not the Queen's way," says Fevella, "(I) was very shocked, very hurt, so I left."
Fevella says he is grateful that Queen's opened a location in Ewa, he just hopes the issues are worked out soon.
Hospital administrators are planning on beefing up the staff. Murray says they are trying to figure out how many more employees they need to keep up with the demand.